Ask the Experts
Posted Dec. 27 at 02:55 AM
ASK THE EXPERTS appears weekly, with answers to a new question being posted every Thursday morning. How the guest experts responded when we asked them:
What is your New Year's Resolution based on a lesson learned during this year's fantasy season?
KFFL's lesson learned this year is two-fold. First of all, we feel that we need to dig deeper into the numbers than we do each week when determining starters if the matchups are similar. When everything appears to be even, there is always a nugget of information that can be found to help identify the better play, and sometimes those tasty statistical morsels are overlooked. The second aspect of this is being more cognizant of weather conditions. Some teams play better in inclement weather than others, naturally, but there is occasionally an instance in which it isn't an issue. Every year you will find a game or two that isn't in the greatest of elements, leading to something like the 8-0 Cleveland Browns' win over the Buffalo Bills in week 15, which likely killed a lot of playoff teams relying on Cleveland's offensive stars. While no one could have predicted the weather would be that poor weeks before the game, a glimpse at the schedule and calendar would have allowed some fantasy owners to have been better prepared.
KFFL offers football as well as baseball content and has captured over a dozen expert league championships. Founded in 1996, this company offers daily news, preseason draft guides, player rankings, sleepers, busts, weekly newsletters and more. KFFL also provides fantasy content to various organizations including SportsTicker and Yahoo! Sports. For more information, visit www.kffl.com .
Always be hunting (because you never know), on the waiver wire that is. In one league I am in Ryan Grant saved me this year. I started the year off on solid ground with LaMont Jordan and Marshawn Lynch at RB, but within a short time period Jordan was injured and lost his starting job and Lynch was out with injury as well. After the Packers went through Jackson, Wynn and Morency, who would think that Ryan Grant would be the guy, but he turned out to be one of the best RBs over the second half of the year. His play landed me in the Super Bowl in one of the most coveted leagues I play in each year.
Kamys is president of Dr. Stats Fantasy Sports. His company, via the web, offers player news, injury reports, cheat sheets, projections, weekly matchups, statistics, and a customized team tracker. Dr. Stats Fantasy Sports also e-mails preseason newsletters and reports throughout the season. For more info visit www.docstats.com or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Never miss a free-agent selection deadline, especially the early ones. In a league that's constantly reshuffling players and teams, this is a gigantic part of the game.
Pianowski is a free-lance journalist who's been writing about sports (fantasy and otherwise) for a variety of websites, newspapers and magazines for the last 20 years. He can be reached at email@example.com.
I learned you can never have enough depth at the RB position. The WRs may have dominated early in 2007, but the steady (and healthy) stud RBs still win your championships.
Nazarek is the CEO of Fantasy Football Mastermind Inc. His company offers an online rookie draft kit, preseason draft guide, customizable cheat sheets, a fantasy auction drafting program, weekly in-season fantasy newsletters, injury reports and free NFL news (updated daily) at its web site. He is the reigning three-peat champion of the SI.com Experts Fantasy League. He is also a nationally published writer in several fantasy magazines and a columnist for SI.com. For more info go to http://www.ffmastermind.com. Nazarek can be reached at 702-568-7118 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’ve had a remarkably good season with picks, teams, and have minded most of my regular season rules established over the years. However, the fantasy playoffs in week 15 were devastating due mostly to bad weather games. In hindsight, of course, I wish I had respected the severe weather reports more. In the future, under similar extreme weather conditions, I will resolve to be more flexible and not rely so much on the ‘play your best player’ rules. Other than that I should hope all my fantasy seasons repeat my 2007 performances!
Weatherford is owner/editor of www.coachbox.com, a fantasy football news and advice community online since 1997. Weatherford was author of the directory and technical editor for IDG Book’s Fantasy Sports Online For Dummies. He has been participating in magazine and expert panels since 1997 and has played fantasy football for over 20 years.
I think the toughest challenge in fantasy prognostication is objectivity. It is difficult to suspend our prejudice to favoritism and disdain. Too often I go for players I like or on teams I like and allow this to color my judgment. The reverse is also true. I may not like a player or he has burned me in the past so I assume and ignore him. To put aside feelings and emotions, and, honestly evaluate each player, is the hardest lesson to learn and re-learn. This year I am coming to the understanding that older players get hurt more and new players lack knowledge and stamina. Next year I will pay more attention to the mid-career players in general. Please, keep in mind that circumstance and talent win out and every rule is made to be broken. Randy Moss and Adrian Peterson have led my auction team to great success.
Not a new lesson learned, but a re-enforcement of what we preach. RB depth is an absolute necessity.
Endsley is co-owner and a senior fantasy football consultant for FantasyDraftEdge.com. For more info, go to www.fantasydraftedge.com.
I think the newest trend will be the "Stud RB Theory" is over. With all the busts in the first three rounds at RB with Rudi Johnson, Laurence Maroney, Larry Johnson and Shaun Alexander to name a few, it is time to start looking at WRs earlier in the draft. It has been easier to hit on top WRs the last few years than finding a No. 1 or 2 RB if not picking in top 5. After the success of Adrian Peterson and Marshawn Lynch as rookies I will also look at rookie RB with a closer eye than in years past.
Swaw is senior writer and owner of GameTimeDecisions.net and the co-host of two fantasy football radio shows for ESPN AM 1000 in Chicago -- Fantasy Football Island and Fantasy Expert. He has been a keynote speaker for the FSTA and several fantasy football conventions with the likes of John Clayton, Chris Mortensen, Sean Salisbury and Mark Schlereth. For more info, visit www.gametimedecisions.net.
I think my New Year's Resolution for 2008 fantasy football is to never again put too much faith in running backs as the top fantasy pick. This was the year it would've made sense to take a quarterback in the first round of the draft and considering the production from Tom Brady, Tony Romo and Peyton Manning - I would've taken this over some of the players I drafted in the first round - Steven Jackson, Larry Johnson and (although I stayed away from him in my drafts) you have to throw Shaun Alexander into that mix as well. I am definitely going to be a little more cautious with my running back picks next season, but I also think taking a rookie in your fantasy draft could pay big dividends. In most of my fantasy drafts, Minnesota's Adrian Peterson was a middle round pick and has proven to be a better start than any of the other running backs selected.
I think being quicker to react to surprising developments is a critical one. I drafted Brett Favre as a backup in several leagues. If you wait until week 4 to move him ahead of somebody like Vince Young, maybe you've already lost 2-3 games you would otherwise have won. Similar instances involved guys like Brandon Marshall and Steve Smith -- if one guy's not getting it done, you can't wait forever for him to come around. Another one is never getting too comfortable with your roster depth. If a starting running back becomes available, like Earnest Graham or Ryan Grant, you go after him -- rather than saying, eh, I've got Reggie Bush and Marshawn Lynch, I'll be fine.
Richardson has been a columnist and contributor to the Fantasy Football Index magazine and web site for the past six years. His responsibilities include team defense and IDP projections, as well as various site features. He has run the magazine's annual draft and auction leagues since their inception. Other writing credits have included FFToday.com and football coverage for newspapers in Colorado and Florida. For more information go to www.fantasyindex.com.
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